Usages/Meanings of seven अव्ययानि all starting with अ

अव्ययाभ्यासः Study of Indeclinables

usages/meanings of seven अव्ययानि all starting with अ
From “Student’s Guide to Sanskrit Composition” by Shri. V. S. Apte

It seems in old days authors did not much use styles as bullets for paragraphs. But certainly Shri. Apte brings out very beautifully various shades of usage of various indeclinables. It makes a charming study for sure. Shri. V. S. Apte is well-known for his Sanskrit-English dictionary. In the dictionary also he does present various shades of meaning of a word. But as far as indeclinables are concerned, the details in Student’s Guide are more study-worthy and far better illustrated with examples.
1) अङ्गVocative particle – अङ्ग पूजासंबोधनयोः (गणरत्नमहोदधि)

  1. तन्मन्ये क्वचित् अङ्ग भृङ्ग-तरुणेन आस्वादिता मालिनी (गणरत्नमहोदधि) – It seems, eh, the young male of a bee has tasted (kissed) this मालिनी flower.
  2. अङ्ग, कश्चित्कुशली तातः (कादंबरी by बाणभट्ट) – Say, is father somewhat okay ?
  3. अङ्ग विद्वन् माणवकं अध्यापय (गणरत्नमहोदधि) – Please, Sir, teach माणवक Here, it is a respectful request.
  4. Sometimes used with किम् – तृणेन कार्यं भवतीश्वराणां किमङ्ग वाग्-हस्तवता नरेण (पञ्चतन्त्र, तन्त्र-I, story 1) – (Even) Gods need grass. What then of (learned) men having speech and hands ?
  5. I would like to add here – (नेपथ्ये कलकलाटः) सूत्रधारः – अयि, किं मयि विज्ञापन-व्यग्रे एव शब्दः इव श्रूयते ? अङ्ग, पश्यामि | (स्वप्नवासवदत्तम् by भास) (Noise behind the curtain) (Says the compere) Er, what is the noise, when I am telling (you) this ? Let me see.

2) अथ

  • Most commonly an invocation for auspicious commencement. This significance of अथ is explained in this – ॐ-कारश्चाथशब्दश्च द्वावेतौ ब्रह्मणः पुरा । कण्ठं भित्त्वा विनिर्यातौ तस्मान्माङ्गलिकावुभौ ।। ॐ-कार and अथ were the two words (sounds) which came out (first and foremost among all sounds) from Brahma’s mouth. Both these words (sounds) are hence regarded as the auspicious ones.
  • Variety of uses are detailed by the quote – मन्गलानन्तरारंभप्रश्नकार्त्स्न्येष्वथो अथ (अ. = Reference of which book ?)
  • Variety of uses are detailed also by another quote – मङ्गले संशयारंभाधिकारानन्तरेषु च | अन्वादेशे प्रतिज्ञायां प्रश्नसाकल्योरपि || (हे. = Reference of which book ?)
  1. अथातो ब्रह्मजिज्ञासा (शाङ्करभाष्य) – May here begin inquiry into what Brahma is !
  2. Marking the beginning of a new chapter अथ प्रथमोऽध्यायः …. etc. at the beginning of every chapter in श्रीमद्भगवद्गीता.
  3. Implying continuity such as ‘then’ – अथ प्रजानामधिपः प्रभाते वनाय धेनुं मुमोच (रघुवंशे सर्ग-2 श्लोक-1) – Then the king (would) let loose the cow in the morning (to go to) the forest.
    • ‘Then’ as a correlative of ‘if’ न चेन्मुनिकुमारोऽयमथ कोऽस्य व्यपदेशः ? (अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तलम् सर्ग 7) If he is not son (or disciple) of a Muni, what then is his disposition ?
  4. As an interrogative – अथ शक्तोऽसि भोक्तुम् ? (गणरत्नमहोदधि) (So), are you able to eat ? Also as a supplementary to an interrogative – अथ सा किमाख्यस्य राजर्षेः पत्नी ? (अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तलम् सर्ग 7) – So, is she wife of राजर्षी ? of what name ?
  5. As conjunction ‘and’, ‘as well as’ – (1) भीमोऽथार्जुनः (गणरत्नमहोदधि) (2)   गणितमथ कलां कौशिकीं (मृच्छकटिकम्)
  6. With the meaning ‘in case’, ‘in any case’, ‘if’, ‘if granted’, (1) अथ कौतुकमावेदयामि (कादंबरी by बाणभट्ट) (2) अथ मरणमवश्यमेव जन्तोः (वेणीसंहारम्)
  7. With the meaning ‘entirely’, ‘in totality’  साकल्येन यथा – अथ धर्मं व्याख्यास्यामः (गणरत्नमहोदधि)
  8. With doubt संशयेन यथा – शब्दो नित्योऽथानित्यः (गणरत्नमहोदधि)
  9. With किम् it is used for the meaning ‘is that so ?’ e.g. शकारः – चेट प्रवहणमागतम् चेटः – अथ किम् ? (मृच्छकटिकम्)
  10. With वा it is used in the sense of ‘else’, ‘or else’ अथवा
    • अथ वा is also used in the sense ‘why not ?’ e.g. दीर्ये किं न सहस्रधाहमथ वा रामेण किं दुष्करम् ? (उत्तररामचरितम्) Why am I not shattered to thousand pieces ? Or, what is impossible for Rama ?

3) अपि Usages of अपि are summarized in – अपि संभावनाप्रश्नशंकागर्हासमुच्चये । तथायुक्तपदार्थेषु कामचारक्रियासु च ।।

  1. Meaning of संभावना disdain e.g. पातितोऽपि कराघातैः उत्पतत्येव कन्दुकः । (भर्तृहरि-नीतिशतकम् 85)
  2. In asking questions प्रश्न, it comes in the beginning of the sentence e.g. अपि तपो वर्धते ? (अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तलम् सर्ग 1) Is (your) penance prospering ?
  3. With the meaning ‘even’ – e.g. इयमधिकमनोज्ञा वल्कलेनापि तन्वी (अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तलम् सर्ग 1) This girl with beautiful body is charming even when wearing bark-garments.
  4. With the meaning ‘also’, ‘on one’s part’ – e.g.
    1. राजापि मुनिवाक्यमङ्गीकृत्यातिष्ठत् (दशकुमारचरितम् I-1) The king also, on his part, accepted the words of the sage and stayed (quiet).
    2. विष्णुशर्मणापि राजपुत्राः पाठिताः (पञ्चतन्त्रे I) Vishnusharman on his part taught the princes.
    3. अपि सिञ्च अपि स्तुहि (सिद्धान्तकौमुदी) Sprinkle and pray.
    4. अस्ति मे सोदरस्नेहोऽप्येतेषु (अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तलम् सर्ग 1) I also have a sisterly affection for them.
  5. Question expressing doubt or uncertainty – e.g. अपि चोरो भवेत् ? May it be a thief ?
  6. To express hope or expectation – e.g. अपि जीवेत्स ब्राह्मणशिशुः (उत्तररामचरितम् 2) I hope, the Brahmin boy will come to life.
    • When expressing expectation अपि is often followed by नाम – e.g. तदपि नाम रामभद्रः पुनरपीदं वनमलंकुर्यात् (उत्तररामचरितम् 2) Then (I expect that) Rama will again grace this forest.
  7. In the sense of गर्हा censure – धिग्देवदत्तमपि स्तुयाद्वृषलं (सिद्धान्तकौमुदी) fie upon Devadatta; he will even praise a S’udra. (So, culpable he is)
  8. In the sense of पदार्थ an implicit word सर्पिषोऽपि स्यात् (सिद्धान्तकौमुदी)Even a drop of clarified butter.
  9. In the sense of कामचारक्रिया or अन्ववसर्ग permission to do as one likes – (1) अपि स्तुहि (सिद्धान्तकौमुदी) (2) अपि स्तुह्यपि सेधास्मांस्तथ्यमुक्तं नराशन (भट्टिकाव्य 8-92)
  10. After words expressing number अपि has the sense of totality. For example, (1) सर्वैरपि राज्ञां प्रयोजनम् (पञ्चतन्त्र I -1) Kings need all (not excluding even one). (2) चतुर्णामपि वर्णानाम् ‘of all four वर्ण-s’
  11. When joined with interrogative pronouns and their derivatives, it has the sense of ‘any’ and sometimes that of ‘indescribable’ – e.g. (1) कोऽपि हेतुः (उत्तररामचरितम् 6) ‘some (unknown) purpose’ (2) तनस्य किमपि द्रव्यं यो हि यस्य प्रियो जनः (उत्तररामचरितम् 2)
  12. यद्यपि — तथापि are used as correlatives and mean ‘even though, yet’, ‘___ still’, ‘nevertheless’.

4) अयि Usages are explained as – अयि प्रश्नानुनयोस्तथा संबोधनेऽपि च ।  (मे.)

  1. As a gentle address – e.g. अयि विवेकविश्रांतमभिहितम् (मालविकाग्निमित्रम् 1) ‘Friend, you have said something void of judgement’.
  2. When asking a gentle question – e.g. अयि जीवितनाथ जीवसि ? (कुमारसंभवम् IV-3) ‘Lord of my life, art thou alive ?’
  3. When distracted – e.g. सूत्रधारः – अयि, किं मयि विज्ञापन-व्यग्रे एव शब्दः इव श्रूयते ? (स्वप्नवासवदत्तम् by भास) (Noise behind the curtain) (Says the compere) Er, what is the noise, when I am telling (you) this ?

5) अये is principally used

  1. to express surprise, wonder – e.g. (1) अये भगवत्यरुन्धती (उत्तररामचरितम् 5) ‘Oh ! It si the revered Arundhati !’ (2) अये मय्येव भृकुटीधरः संवृत्तः (उत्तररामचरितम् 5) “Um ! Rasing eyebrows at me only”
  2. to express grief, dejection, fear – e.g. अये देवपादपद्मोपजीविनोऽवस्थेयम् (मुद्राराक्षसम्)’Alas, This is the state of a servant and dependent of the lotus feet of His Majesty.

6) अहह Usages are explained by – अहहेत्यद्भुते खेदे परिक्लेशप्रकर्षयोः । (मे.)

  1. To denote joy, or astonishment, amazement अहह महतां निःसीमानश्चरित्रविभूतयः (भर्तृहरि-नीतिशतकम् 35) “Oh, the greatness of the life of the great is indeed infinite !’
  2. To denote grief or excessive torment – e.g. (1) अहह दारुणो वज्रनिघातः (उत्तररामचरितम् 2) “Oh ! It is a terrible bolt from the blue !” (2) अहह कष्टमपण्डितता विधेः (भर्तृहरि III – 35) “Alas, this is indiscretion of providence.”

7) अहो Usages are explained by – अहो विगर्थे शोके च करुणार्थविषादयोः । संबोधने प्रशंसायां विस्मये पादपूरणे ।। (मे.)

  1. It is a vocative particle e.g. अहो राजानः “O Kings !”
  2. Used with adjectives and nouns in the sense of joy ‘Oh !’, ‘Oh how !’ e.g. – (1) अहो मधुरमासां कन्यकानां दर्शनम् (अभिज्ञानशाकुन्तलम् सर्ग 1) ‘Oh how, pleasing sight of beautiful girls !’ (2) अहो सर्वास्ववस्थास्वनवद्यता रूपस्य (मालविकाग्निमित्रम् 2) “Oh, faultlessness of beauty in all states”
  3. Used with adjectives and nouns in the sense of grief or sorrow – e.g. (1) अहो विपाकः (उत्तररामचरितम् 4) “Oh ! This change of state !” (2) अहो उन्मीलन्ति वेदनाः (उत्तररामचरितम् 4) “Oh these pains !”
  4. For surprise caused by meeting someone unexpectedly अहो बकुलावलिका (मालविकाग्निमित्रम् 1) “Oh Bakulaavalikaa !”

So much detailing of usages/meanings of seven अव्ययानि all starting with अ.

शुभमस्तु
-o-O-o-

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Comments from Mr. Desikan on change of voice and role of अव्यय-s

Mr. Desikan put forth an observation – “Subject in active voice gets a preposition ‘by’ in passive voice. Since function of the preposition ‘by’ is served by third case, in Sanskirt the subject of active voice is put in third case, when making passive voice. See माता to मात्रा and अहं to मया in the above examples.”

I understood the observation to be inquiring about the role of indeclinables in the transformation into passive voice. I responded – “कर्मणि-प्रयोगे अपि क्रियापदं कर्तृपदमेव अनुवर्तते । पश्यतु, “पुस्तकं पठ्यते”, “पुस्तकानि पठ्यन्ते”.

Mr. Desikan pursued his original query, inquiring “मातया – कः प्रयोगः ?” Please read  मात्रा in place of मातया, all through.

My response is –

कस्मिन्नपि वाक्ये यत्किमपि पदं न किन्चिन्नाम अनुवर्तते, न वा किञ्चित् क्रियापदं अनुवर्तते तत् अव्ययात्मकं मन्तव्यं इति मे मतिः | अतः “मातया बालः ताड्यते” अस्मिन् वाक्ये ‘मातया’-शब्दः अव्ययात्मकः भवति | एतद्विधे विचारे न कश्चित् व्याकरण-दोषः खलु ? यः शब्दः कर्तरि-प्रयोगे कर्तृपदेन भवति, तस्य वाक्यस्य कर्मणि-प्रयोगे सः शब्दः अव्ययात्मकः भवति | ‘अहं तिष्ठामि’ अस्य वाक्यस्य भावे-प्रयोगे ‘मया तिष्ठ्यते’इत्यस्य रूपान्तरे ‘मया’-शब्दः अव्ययात्मकः एव | अत्र कर्तृपदं किम् ? यदि धातुः अकर्मकः, तर्हि तस्य भावे-प्रयोगे कर्ता न विद्यते इति मम विचारः |

In English, my response is – Whichever word/phrase in a sentence does not follow (or does not have to follow) the formatting of another noun or verb, that word/phrase is to be treated as indeclinable अव्ययम्. In Sanskrit change of voice can apply even to active voice sentences having intransitive verbs. Voice so changed is called as भावे-प्रयोगः. Sentences in भावे-प्रयोगः have no subject ! So there is no visible conformity between subject and verb. In a sentence मया तिष्ठ्यते the word मया then merits to be treated as being indeclinable i.e. अव्ययम्. Formatting of this word मया has no mandate of conformity with the formatting of the other word, the verb तिष्ठ्यते.

This leads to discussing उपसर्ग-विभक्ति-स्वर-प्रति-रूपकाश्च in the commentary on the सूत्रम् स्वरादिनिपातमव्ययम्. But विभक्तिरूपकाश्च i.e. words declined by case do become अव्यय-s.

Thanks to Dr. Bhat for pointing out that query of Mr. Desikan is about the word “मातया” This word is wrong. It is a grave mistake, committed by me. The word should be  मात्रा.

Query from Mr. Rajagopalan Seshadri on previous posts on अव्ययानि

There is one query from Mr. Rajagopalan Seshadri, making a statement

So, we put in short indeclinable as लिङ्ग-विभक्ति-वचन-शून्यानि अव्ययानि.

I would like to respond as follows –

Your statement लिङ्ग-विभक्ति-वचन-शून्यानि अव्ययानि is not a  good conclusion. For example किम्  is usually a pronoun. But in a sentence such as  सः गच्छति किम् ? ‘Does he go ?’ it is an interrogative and hence an अव्ययम्.

The concept in English grammar speaking of Parts of Speech classifies words into eight classes. The concept of अव्ययम् challenges that. In Sanskrit अव्ययम् encompasses, as I mentioned in my first post, adverbs, conjunctions, exclamatory words, auxiliaries (such as न for negation), also gerunds and infinitives.

Another example of a word which does have लिङ्ग, विभक्ति, वचन but is an अव्ययम् is वेगेन. So अव्यय-s are those words in a sentence, which, in a sentence, do not have to conform and have the same formatting as of another word. In a sentence अश्वः वेगेन धावति the word वेगेन does have a formatting. But that formatting does not conform, does not have to conform to the formatting either of अश्वः or of धावति.

So अव्ययम् is a concept of ‘no mandate of conformity of formatting’ and not of having formatting or not. Of course there are many अव्यय-s, which do not have any formatting whatsoever, e.g. न. हे, भोः. Even किम् has a formatting नपुंसकलिङ्गम्, प्रथमा विभक्तिः, एकवचनम्. But in a sentence such as सः गच्छति किम् ? its formatting does not conform to the formatting of सः or of गच्छति.

Actually there is some discussion about उपसर्ग-विभक्ति-स्वर-प्रति-रूपकाश्च in the commentary on the सूत्रम् स्वरादिनिपातमव्ययम्. So, the post on this needs further detailing.

Words which do not have any formatting whatsoever and are used in sentences are अव्यय-s. But words having formatting can also be अव्यय-s. So important criterion for identifying अव्यय-s in a sentence is the ‘mandate of conformity or not with the formatting of another word(s)’.

Study of अव्ययप्रकरणम्

Study of अव्ययप्रकरणम्

पाणिनिसूत्रम् – स्वरादिनिपातमव्ययम् (१-१-३७)

In treatises on grammar, especially सिद्धान्तकौमुदी by भट्टोजी दीक्षित there is a chapter on indeclinables अव्ययप्रकरणम्, which mentions 6 aphorisms सूत्राणि from अष्टाध्यायी of पाणिनि

    1. (१-१-३७) स्वरादिनिपातमव्ययम्
    2. (१-१-३८) तद्धिताश्चासर्वविभक्तिः
    3. (१-१-३९) कृन्मेजन्तः
    4. (१-१-४०) क्त्वातोनुन्कसुनः
    5. (१-१-४१) अव्ययीभावश्च
    6. (२-४-८२) अव्ययादाप्सुपः

The chapter in लघुसिद्धान्तकौमुदी by वरदराजाचार्य seems to omit (2).
In अष्टाध्यायी of पाणिनि one would find a few other aphorisms where there seems to be reference to अव्ययानि the indeclinables. I wonder why these aphorisms are not considered in the chapter अव्ययप्रकरणम्.

  • (१-४-६७) पुरोऽव्ययम् and in continuation of this (१-४-६८) अस्तं च
  • (२-१-६) अव्ययं विभक्तिसमीपसमृद्धिव्यृद्ध्यर्थाभावात्ययासंप्रतिशब्दप्रादुर्भावपश्चाद्यथा ऽऽ नुपूर्व्ययौगसादृश्यसंपत्तिसाकल्यान्तवचनेषु ।
  • (२-२-१९) उपपदमतिङ् especially considering the next (२-२-२०) अमैवाव्ययेन ।
    • उपपदमतिङ् is actually उपपदम् अतिङ् meaning उपपदम् has no तिङ्. Here, तिङ् means the set of all suffixes which make verbs क्रियापदानि from verbal roots धातवः

Coming to the 6 aphorisms referred to in the अव्ययप्रकरणम् in सिद्धान्तकौमुदी, भट्टोजी दीक्षिताचार्य gives extensive detailing of each aphorism.

(१-१-३७) स्वरादिनिपातमव्ययम् is detailed as –

  1. स्वरादयो निपाताश्चाव्ययसंज्ञाः स्युः । This definition itself identifies two types of अव्ययानि – स्वरादयः those starting with स्वर् and those that are निपाताः
  2. Among स्वरादयः are listed – स्वर् heaven, अन्तर् midst, प्रातर् ‘in the morning’, पुनर् again, सनुतर् ‘in concealment’, उच्चैस् high, नीचैस् low, शनैस् slowly, ऋधक् rightly, ऋते except, युगपत् ‘at once’, आरात् ‘far near’, पृथक् apart, ह्यस् yesterday, श्वस् tomorrow, दिवा ‘by day’, रात्रौ ‘in the night’, सायम् ‘at eve’, चिरम् ‘for a long time’, मनाक् ‘a little’, ईषत् ‘a little’, जोषम् silently, तूष्णीम् silent, बहिस् outside, अवस् outside, समया near, निकषा near, स्वयम् ‘of oneself’, वृथा ‘in vain’, नक्तम् ‘at night’, नञ् not, हेतौ ‘by reason of’, इद्धा truly, अद्धा evidently, सामि half, वत् like, (ब्राह्मणवत्, क्षत्रियवत्) सना perpetually, सनत् perpetually, सनात् perpetually, उपधा divided, तिरस् crookedly, अन्तरा ‘without, except’, अन्तरेण ‘without, except’, ज्योक् quickly, कम् ‘water, ease’, शम् ease, सहसा hastily, विना without, नाना various, स्वस्ति ‘greetings’, स्वधा (interjection), अलम् enough, वषट् (interjection), श्रौषट् (interjection), वौषट् (interjection), अन्यत् otherwise, अस्ति existence, उपांशु privately, क्षमा ‘patience, pardon’, विहावसा ‘aloft, in the air’, दोषा ‘in the evening’, मृषा falsely, मिथ्या falsely, मुधा ‘in vain’, पुरा formerly, मिथो mutually, मिथस् mutually, प्रायस्’ often, frequently’, मुहुस् repeatedly, प्रवाहुकम् ‘at the same time’, प्रवाहिका ‘at the same time’, आर्यहलम् violently, अभीक्ष्णम् repeatedly, साकम् with, सार्धम् with, नमस् ‘with reverence’, हिरुक् without, धिक् ‘fie !’, अम् quickly, आम् ‘indeed, yes’, प्रताम् ‘with fatigue’, प्रशान् alike, प्रतान् widely, मा ‘do not’, माङ् ‘do not’, । आकृतिगणोऽयम् ।। This is a list of 85 indeclinable of a set called as आकृतिगण.
  3. English meanings are from article # 399 in James Ballentyne’s book on  लघुसिद्धान्तकौमुदी.
  4. I downloaded from the internet सिद्धान्तकौमुदी with commentaries called as (1) तत्त्वबोधिनीव्याख्या by ज्ञानेन्द्र सरस्वती and (2) सुबोधिनीव्याख्या by जयकृष्ण. There, the commentaries give meanings and examples of usage of the indeclinables. It is also mentioned, “आकृतिगण इति । तेन अन्येऽपि ज्ञेयाः । meaning, “This is आकृतिगण. By this others also should be understood.” So the list of 85 is not comprehensive of all आकृतिगण-अव्ययानि. For example, (ब्राह्मणवत्, क्षत्रियवत्) are examples of indeclinables that can be obtained by using वत् as a suffix. This suffix can be affixed to many, many nouns. That would make infinite number of अव्ययानि.
  5. Further list – च and, वा or, ह (an expletive), अह (vocative particle), एव ‘only, exactly’, एवम् ‘so, thus’, नूनम् certainly, शश्वत् continually, युगपत् at once, भूयस् ‘repeatedly, again’, कूपत् excellently, कुवित abundantly, नेत् if, चेत् if, चण् if (the ण् is indicatory), कच्चित् ‘what if ?’, किञ्चित् , यत्र where, नह no, हन्त ‘ah !’, माकिः ‘do not’, माकीम् ‘do not’, नकिः ‘do not’, आकिम् indeed, माङ् not, नञ् not, यावत् ‘as much as’, तावत् ‘so much’, त्वै perhaps, द्वै perhaps, रै (disrespectful interjection), श्रौषट्, वौषट्, स्वाहा ‘oblation to Gods’, स्वधा, तुम् thouing, तथाहि thus, खलु certainly, किल indeed, अथो now, अथ ‘now, auspicious initiative’, सुष्ठु excellent, स्म (attached to present tense, gives past meaning), आदह ‘fie !’। Here total 44 अव्यय-s.
  6. There are some repetitions in the first list of 85 and the चादि-list of 44 अव्यय-s. The repetitions are underlined
  7. There is a note at the end of आदह – उपसर्गविभक्तिस्वररूपकाश्च ।
  8. There is a further list which contains all vowels also, listed as अव्यय-s. The list is – अवदत्तम्, अहंयुः, अस्तिक्षीरा, अ, आ, इ, ई, उ, ऊ, ए, ऐ, ओ, औ, पशु, शुकम्, यथाकथाच, पाट्, प्याट्, अङ्ग, है, हे, भोः, अये, द्म, विषु, एकपदे, युत्, आतः ।
  9. Here अवदत्तम्, अहंयुः, अस्तिक्षीरा, are examples.
  10. Here total 25 अव्यय-s.
  11. There is a note here – चादिरप्याकृतिगणः । This note suggests that the list started in the previous bullet starting from च and ending at आतः here, is also to be considered as आकृतिगण.
  12. Total number of अव्यय-s in आकृतिगण thus become 85 + 44 – 6 +25 = 148
  13. The mention of आकृतिगणः raises a thought whether there are other गण-s also. If yes, which are they and which अव्यय-s would make those lists ?
  14. This सूत्रम् also mentions निपाताः. Do above lists include निपाताः ? If not, which are अव्यय-s that are निपाताः ?
  15. In आशुबोध-व्याकरणम् authored by श्रीतारानाथ तर्कवाचस्पति भट्टाचार्य (I had it downloaded from the internet), there is a सूत्रम् – अद्रव्यवाचिनश्चादयो निपाताः The mention चादयः suggests that the अव्यय-s from च, वा,… are निपाताः.
  16. James Ballentyne also mentions the चादयः अव्ययानि as निपाताः
  17. English meanings mentioned above from book of James Ballentyne may not be the most appropriate meanings. In “Student’s Guide to Sanskrit Composition” by Shri. V. S Apte, some 58-odd अव्ययानि have been discussed bringing forth how a particular indeclinable is used with different shades of meaning, all this with examples from Sanskrit literature.

I am tempted to dwell on that study before proceeding with other five सूत्र-s in the अव्ययप्रकरणम् in सिद्धान्तकौमुदी. I shall attempt that in further parts.

शुभमस्तु
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अव्ययाभ्यासः Study of Indeclinables/Particles

अव्ययाभ्यासः Study of Indeclinables/Particles

When embarking on a study of words in Sanskrit, one would think that अव्ययानि should be the easiest ones to study, simply because they do not decline.
Words which decline suffer the declension primarily due to suffixes प्रत्ययाः So one would think that अव्ययानि would be words which do not have any suffix in them. However this is not true.

After I started such study of अव्ययानि, I realized that there are many अव्ययानि,

  • which are obtained by some declension from some noun e.g. वेगेन.
  • from verbal roots, e.g. गत्वा, गन्तुम्.
  • There are also compound words which are called as अव्ययानि, such as सत्वरम् (त्वरया सह = with haste), which are composed by compounding of the type अव्ययीभाव-समास.

So, it transpires that अव्ययानि are those words in a sentence, which do not decline to conform to some other word(s), with which it might be related. But the relationship does not demand conformity.

  • We know that adjectives have to decline to conform to the gender, case and number of the noun, which it qualifies. That conformity is mandatory.
  • Verb has to decline to conform to the desired tense or mood and conform also to person and number of the subject.
  • अव्ययानि do not have such mandate of conformity. Adverbs, which eminently are indeclinables, do ‘add’ extra information about the action, i.e. extra information about the ‘verb’. Adverbs are thus related with verbs. But they do not have the mandate of conformity with the verb. As we know, adverbs are of four types –
    • Adverb of time, e.g. Old man walks slowly in the evening वृद्धः सायंकाले मन्दं चलति. Adverbs of time are answers to a question ‘when ?’
    • Adverb of manner, e.g. He is lazy सः अलसं वर्तते In the above sentence वृद्धः सायंकाले मन्दं चलति ‘slowly‘ मन्दं is an adverb of manner. Adverbs of manner are answers to a question ‘how ?’
    • Adverb of place, e.g. Where there is a will, there is a way. यत्र इच्छा तत्र उपायः Here, ‘where’ यत्र and ‘there’ तत्र are conjunctions and also adverbs of place. Adverbs of place are answers to a question ‘where ?’
    • Adverb of reason or purpose, e.g. He is deaf, hence he does not hear. सः बधिरः अतः न शृणोति किञ्चित्. or ‘He goes to temple for praying‘ सः प्रार्थनायै मन्दिरं गच्छति. Adverbs of reason or purpose are answers to a question ‘why ?’
  • In English, conjunctions are considered as a separate part of speech. In Sanskrit conjunctions are also अव्ययानि. For example, in the above sentence, Where there is a will, there is a way. यत्र इच्छा तत्र उपायः ‘where’ यत्र and ‘there’ तत्र are very much the conjunctions.
  • In English there are ‘no’, ‘not’ as auxiliaries for negation. One also uses auxiliary verbs for interrogation. In Sanskrit the negatives न or मा as also an interrogative as किम् in सः गच्छति किम् ? is an indeclinable अव्ययम्.
    • Now, this is interesting. Grammatically किम् is a pronoun सर्वनाम. But in a sentence as सः गच्छति किम् ? it is an interrogative and is an indeclinable अव्ययम्. In English they use an auxiliary verb, ‘do’, e.g. ‘Does he go ?’
    • So, in Sanskrit all those words in a sentence are अव्ययानि, which do not have a mandate
      • (a) to conform to the gender, case and number of a noun or
      • (b) to conform to the desired tense or mood and conform also to person and number of the verb/subject.
  • The exclamatory words such as hey, oh, हे भोः are of course अव्ययानि.
  • अव्ययानि the indeclinables may not be a single word. It may be a phrase as well.
    • There are two cases, where a phrase in English, is made into a single-word indeclinable by using suffixes with verbal roots, i.e. धातु + प्रत्यय.
      • Phrases of intention or purpose – For example, ‘For going’ or ‘to go’ = गन्तुम् (गम् + तुम्). Such अव्यय-s are called as तुमन्त-s. In English grammar these are called as ‘infinitives’
      • To show completion of one action to be followed by another action i.e. for phrases such as ‘on going’ or ‘after going’ गत्वा. Such अव्यय-s are called as त्वान्त. In Sanskrit grammar the suffix प्रत्यय is called as क्त्वा.
        • When there is a उपसर्ग prefix with a धातुone should use a suffix य instead of त्वा. The suffix य is called as ल्यप् and the indeclinable with this suffix य is called as ल्यबन्त.
        • त्वान्त/ल्यबन्त अव्यय-s in Sanskrit are akin to ‘gerunds’ In English grammar.
    • In Sanskrit itself, there would be phrases and words, which serve the function of indeclinable. For example a phrase केन कारणेन (= by what reason) is synonymous with किमर्थम् (= what purpose).
      • Within the phrase केन कारणेन the word केन needs to conform with कारणेन. But the phrase as a whole does not have conformity (a) or (b) obligatory.

There is a well-known verse, which is supposed to give some kind of a definition of what an अव्यय is. It says –

सदृशं त्रिषु लिङ्गेषु सर्वासु च विभक्तिषु ।

वचनेषु च सर्वेषु यन्न व्येति तदव्ययम् ।।

This verse speaking of no change due to लिङ्ग, विभक्ति, वचन seems to dwell only on the non-adjectival aspect of an अव्यय. The other aspects or usages as adverbs, conjunctions, auxiliaries, exclamatory are not covered. [Note, this verse seems to be from explanation in सिद्धान्तकौमुदी for the सूत्रम् – (२-४-८२) अव्ययादाप्सुपः]

When looking for study of अव्यय-s in treatises on grammar, especially सिद्धान्तकौमुदी by भट्टोजी दीक्षित it is seen that अव्यय-s are discussed at three places

  1. There is a chapter on indeclinables अव्ययप्रकरणम्, which mentions 6 aphorisms सूत्राणि from अष्टाध्यायी of पाणिनि
    1. (१-१-३७) स्वरादिनिपातमव्ययम्
    2. (१-१-३८) तद्धिताश्चासर्वविभक्तिः
    3. (१-१-३९) कृन्मेजन्तः
    4. (१-१-४०) क्त्वातोनुन्कसुनः
    5. (१-१-४१) अव्ययीभावश्च
    6. (२-४-८२) अव्ययादाप्सुपः
  2. Since the aphorism (१-१-४१) अव्ययीभावश्च is one of the six, अव्यय-s obtained as अव्ययीभाव-compounds are detailed in a separate chapter.
  3. The aphorism (१-१-४०) क्त्वातोनुन्कसुनः refers to अव्यय-s obtained from verbal roots, i.e. धातु-s. Such अव्यय-s are known as कृदव्यय-s. These are discussed in chapters as कृदन्त-प्रकरणम्.

I am obliged to Dr. Devadatta Sarode at Somayya Sanskrit Vidyapeetham, Mumbai for suggesting me to study “Student’s Guide to Sanskrit Composition” by Shri. V. S Apte. The book can be downloaded free at http://archive.org/details/StudentsGuideToSanskritComposition-VsApte1925 In this book there are 8 lessons (XXI to XXVIII) discussing Particles अव्ययानि across 54 pages and 66 articles (Nos. 242 to 307).

I also have a 2005-edition of a small 48-page booklet संस्कृत-अव्यय-कोषः by Shri. G. V. Karandikar. In the booklet apart from discussions, there is a dictionary of 300 अव्ययानि detailed in देवनागरी  alphabetical order. Meanings are given in Marathi and English.

Although I embarked on this study, with the premise that अव्ययानि the indeclinables should be the easiest ones to study, now it can be seen that it becomes quite a study.
The six aphorisms in the chapter अव्ययप्रकरणम् is only a part of the study, a major part, though. I propose to detail this study in the next part.

शुभमस्तु
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